Posted by: tim ellis | August 21, 2005

Reykjavik/Rockport, Ma. – Tuesday 3rd August, 1999

There is no breakfast this morning (well we have had a packed one left in our fridges, but that hardly counts), so Jenny, Morag and I volunteer for the first trip down to Captain Bill’s, since that way we get to call in at Dunkin’ Donuts. (We are sure Kevin has shares in them, as he keeps pushing them. He claims he is just trying to drum up enthusiasm for the first trip…)

Today’s naturalist is Michelle, and while we have got up early, the Whales seem to be having a lie in. At first we see very few, and those we do the spot don’t hang around. Then we strike gold, a large number of whales surface feeding, including Salt. She is a large female, who was the first whale to be named here, and was also the first New England Humpback to be Identified in the Caribbean, proving that they do migrate from one area to the other. Her tail fluke is mostly white, and, by way of contrast, she is travelling with Cardhu, another large female whose fluke, appropriately, is all black.

The whales are bubble feeding, tail slapping and head breaching – Salt gives us an excellent view of her baleen in Extreme Close Up! As more public boats arrive we move off towards a group they have missed. This turns out to be a smart move as a short while later we have two or three whales breaching and flipper slapping. We spend some time watching one particularly exhibitionist whale, Colorado, who seems determined to use every available part of its body to slap the water, breaching, flipper slapping, and tail lobbing both the ‘right way up’ and lying ‘belly up’. We see more breaching whales on our way back to port.

Back at the motel a party develops outside the rooms before we head off down to Peg Legs for dinner and the obligatory dirty joke swapping session. Morag orders the lobster – it is the first to three falls, a submission or a knockout! Back at the motel the party continues with more booze, more jokes and even more booze – fortunately we don’t seem to disturb any of the other guests…

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